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Men’s Lacrosse: No. 8 Rutgers Loses Thriller to Army, 14-13

In a battle of the Knights, the Black prevail

Jack Aimone and Rutgers play a lacrosse match against Army on February 18th, 2023 at West Point, NY
Rutgers Athletics

1st Half

The Knights in Scarlet matched up against the Knights in Black on a chilly, sun-splashed afternoon at Michie Field in West Point, New York. Rutgers has not had much success against the Black Knights and Saturday was no different in what felt like a tournament matchup in a game of huge momentum swings and runs by each squad.

After Rutgers took a 1-0 lead on a goal by David Sprock, Army would reel off four consecutive goals, three by Reese Burek who Rutgers had no answer for. The teams would trade goals and then the Scarlet Knights would go on their own four-goal streak, taking a 6-5 lead that included two goals by Jack Aimone and two by Ross Scott, all unassisted drives to the net.

The Black Knights would then add their second four-goal streak of the game, the fourth goal a back-breaking one for the Rutgers defense with 3 ticks left until halftime. The Knights in Scarlet would head to the locker room down 9-6 at halftime.

Army won 12 of 17 face-offs in the first half, including a perfect 7 of 7 in the 1st quarter in a dominant performance by Will Coletti against Rutgers’s Joe Nueman, who was starting in place of the injured Jonathan DuGenio.

2nd Half

Army would increase it’s lead to 10-6 with a goal at the 6:32 mark of the 3rd quarter. With time running down in the 3rd quarter, and Rutgers in desperate need of goals, Brian Cameron would score with a little over a minute remaining and then Ross Scott would add a goal with six seconds left to close the gap, 10-8.

The teams would trade goals and then Army would add their 12th for a three-goal lead. Down 12-9 with a little over ten minutes remaining in the game, the Scarlet Knights would get back up off the turf once again, netting three unassisted goals by Noah Daniels, Scott, and Cameron. The score was once again all tied up, 12-12.

Army’s Will Coletti would add their 13th goat at the 8:49 mark after winning the face-off and racing down the field unimpeded, putting one past Rutgers keeper Kyle Mullin. With 5:34 remaining, Scott would add another unassisted goal, tying the match up at 13-all.

The Black Nights would cap off the scoring at the 3:54 on a goal by Paul Johnson and would ultimately prevail, 14-13.

Key Stats

  • In a game where the stats were pretty even across the board, the two that stood out were Army’s advantage of 7-2 in caused turnovers and 19-11 in face-offs. Rutgers looked rattled at times by the Army defensive pressure on clears. It’s also no secret that face-offs have doomed the Scarlet Knights in late-season conference and tournament matches over the last couple of seasons. Coach Brecht and staff have plenty to fix.


  • Ross Scott tallied 5 goals and one assist
  • Brian Cameron and Jack Aimone both notched hat tricks and two assists apiece
  • This game streamed on ESPN+ and was painful to follow. I have newfound appreciation for the Big Ten Network’s ability to switch to tight shots around the net so the action is easy to follow. The audio level of the color analyst was also notably lower than the play-by-play announcer, making this quite a painful listen.
  • The game, despite the streaming issues, had the feel of playoff lacrosse with Army surging ahead only to see Rutgers claw back. I would love to see the Scarlet Knights get another crack at the Black Knights come May.

Next Up

It doesn’t get any easier. The Knights head home to play the No. 11 Grehyounds of Loyola, who took it to Maryland two weekends ago. The game will be at SHI Stadium February 25th at 1pm and stream on B1G+ (praise be). The positive aspect of these early-season challenging matches is that this Rutgers squad should be more than battle-tested once conference play starts in late March.